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Old 06-28-07, 08:09 AM   #1
Litespeed
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Handling the heat

I usually ride Tuesdays & Thursday after work to do a 25 miles ride. Lately it's been 85+ at 4:30 pm when I usually want to start my rides. I simply can't handle heat, even if I take a Camelback filled with ice. A lot of times on the hills there is a "dead air" spot that really takes it out of me. Any suggestions? I feel guilty not riding but I certainly don't want to get heat stroke either.
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Old 06-28-07, 08:28 AM   #2
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This is going to be interesting listening to the posts from around the different climates. Here, for a good part of the year 85 is around the low with highs well into the 100's. I drink LOTS of water, take Hammer's endurolytes and go slow. I won't hesitate to stop and rest. This year, we have had a TREMENDOUS amount of rain and temps have been extremely low. We haven't seen 100 yet----but I don't remember what the sun looks like either.

What I hate is the cold weather. I read the posts about how cold it is up north and these guys are riding...............amazing.
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Old 06-28-07, 08:31 AM   #3
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Drink plenty of water, reduce the number of miles you plan to ride, ride at an easier pace. If none of that
helps, move to the North Pole. You should be okay there for probably the next ten years, maybe.
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Old 06-28-07, 08:45 AM   #4
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There were lots of people suffering from heat stress on my recent tour of Indiana. Some were sagged in. One was sent to the hospital. From time to time, I noticed a fine powdery substance on my arms and legs and thought it was dust. Then I realized it was salt.

Anyway, I kept drinking lots of water and gatorade, and sucked down some gels, figuring they must have added electrolites. I also poured water over my head and didn't hesitate to pop into convenience stores now and then for a little blast of AC. I don't know if this is much of a prescription, but I got through without incident.
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Old 06-28-07, 08:56 AM   #5
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You become used to it by doing it. Do not however expect to keep up your cool weather pace.

+1 on the slow down and rest more often. You will become more accustomed to the temp and your pace will come back up.

Ever notice how 50deg is so much nicer in the spring than in the fall?
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Old 06-28-07, 08:58 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Litespeed
I usually ride Tuesdays & Thursday after work to do a 25 miles ride. Lately it's been 85+ at 4:30 pm when I usually want to start my rides. I simply can't handle heat, even if I take a Camelback filled with ice. A lot of times on the hills there is a "dead air" spot that really takes it out of me. Any suggestions? I feel guilty not riding but I certainly don't want to get heat stroke either.

Hydration, plenty of it and frequent stop to rest your body a little. Wear comfort skull cap and reduce the usual miles you ride.
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Old 06-28-07, 09:06 AM   #7
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There are no good answers other than to get used to it - Lakeside is hot in the summer but usually low humidity - hydrate and slower pace. However, 85 + degress and low humidity does not seem like dangerous combination to train in. And as I remember, Lakeside and El Cajon will get much hotter as the summer progresses. When we lived in SD, we usually rode the coast and occasionally inland. I start to get concerned at 95+ with high humidity - but this is highly individualistic. Your other choices are travel to the mountains or the coast to escape the heat or the stationary trainer inside.
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Old 06-28-07, 09:29 AM   #8
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Acclimation takes time. We had a cool spring and then the heat hit all at once, which really caused me a lot of initial stress. Now after riding 4 weeks in 85F-90F +60%RH conditions my body has adapted better. Go slow until you get use to it and no matter what drink a lot of fluid, at least 24oz/hour. Also if you have a heart monitor keep an eye on your heart rate. As you get dehydrated it will start to rise and this will alert you to trouble before you feel it.
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Old 06-28-07, 10:49 AM   #9
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Heat does not bother me too much- providing I stay hydrated. What gets through to me is Humidity. That is the energy sapper.
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Old 06-28-07, 11:00 AM   #10
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85 would seem like a cold front compared to most of my afternoon rides these days. I have always taken better to hot weather than most people. I have done more than a few centuries that ended up with triple digit temps. If I avoided riding in hot weather, I wouldn't do much riding.
It is probably genetics as much as acclimation. There must be some reason my ancestors chose to live here before the days of air conditioning. But I still have to take precautions to be able to keep going in very hot weather.
Drink plenty of water and power drinks to replace fluids and minerals.
Evaporation cools you.
Jerseys with long zippers allow more air in to help evaporate sweat.
Lycra shorts evaporate sweat better than baggy shorts.
Ice and super cold water aren't worth the trouble. Cool water is good. Warm water is OK. I've even read that the body has to warm up cold water before it helps.
A rolled up bandanna, soaked in water and tied around the neck can help cool you. A wet bandanna on your head helps.
When I get really hot I'll run water from a hose or faucet over my head. Down the back helps too, but avoid getting the padding of your shorts wet.
Drop the pace a little. You don't want to prolong the agony, but don't push too hard or you'll generate heat faster than you can dissipate it.
Think about that cool shower or swim and that cold beer you're going to have after the ride.
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Old 06-28-07, 11:09 AM   #11
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A rolled up bandanna, soaked in water and tied around the neck can help cool you. A wet bandanna on your head helps.

Think about that cool shower or swim and that cold beer you're going to have after the ride.
Both of these tricks have worked for me during other activities in the heat. I'm an avid gardener and I've been foolish enough to do intensive gardening in the hot direct sun in the middle of summer. I used the bandana trick, but after soaking it with water I rung it out only so it wasn't dripping (it was still quite wet, just not dripping) then put it in the freezer for about 5 minutes to really chill it down. Then I tied it around my neck. It felt as if the external temperature was 10-15 degrees lower and made things much more tolerable for me for about 2 hours. I was surprised how long it lasted I realize you won't have access to a freezer if you need to re-chill it on a longer ride, but this may take you 25 miles.
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Old 06-28-07, 11:54 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Litespeed
I usually ride Tuesdays & Thursday after work to do a 25 miles ride. Lately it's been 85+ at 4:30 pm when I usually want to start my rides. I simply can't handle heat, even if I take a Camelback filled with ice. A lot of times on the hills there is a "dead air" spot that really takes it out of me. Any suggestions? I feel guilty not riding but I certainly don't want to get heat stroke either.

Wow! Your temps are down to the mid 80's in the afternoon? Brrrrr, better take your leg warmers for the return route! We're lucky to have temps that low around here during the summer in the afternoon or morning.

Seriously though, back off of your usual pace, keep the spin up, and carry an extra water bottle (full that is) just to pour on your jersey or over your head to help with the heat disipation (sp?). Definitely drink before you get thirsty, if you don't have to take a whiz when you finish with your ride, you weren't drinking enough. Enjoy the ride, at least the road won't be slick from ice, but hearing the asphalt bubbles popping all of the time get a little annoying.
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Old 06-28-07, 12:09 PM   #13
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Begin with your body already adequately hydrated, so you may need to drink water before you leave.
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Old 06-28-07, 12:24 PM   #14
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Change your riding time . . .
Get up early and be out riding at daybreak . . . cooler for sure.
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Old 06-28-07, 12:35 PM   #15
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85 degrees isn't that hot. I used to ride in the Hundred and Teens to 120 near Palm Springs. As a kid I normally would ride in 95 degrees and 95% humidity in Florida. I used to ride all summer in San Diego and never noticed much problem except getting sweaty.

Drink lots of water, especially before you ride. In the desert, I would take 2 liters for a 50 minute ride. Figure that there is a 20 minute delay from the time you are thirsty till the water gets to you. Drink before you are thirsty.

Wear your helmet. All that styrofoam will help protect you from the heat.

Take it easy. Don't push.

Enjoy a shower afterwards and drink plenty of fluids afterwards especially juice for the electrolytes.
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